Do You Need More Time?

IF YOU checked off the second or third choice for most of the accompanying questions, you probably do need more time. And you are not alone. Almost everywhere people are under pressure to do what must be done​—and that may have nothing to do with what is truly important to them. Instead, it may have everything to do with meeting the demands of the moment​—fixing the car, satisfying the boss, handling unexpected interruptions. As you respond to one crisis after another, you may feel you have no control over how your time is spent. You may even feel that you are rushing through life without experiencing it.

Of course, you tell yourself that this is all temporary. Eventually, life will slow down, and you will have time to focus on the things that really matter to you​—the things that enrich your life as well as that of your family and others. But when? Do you see an opening in your schedule today? This week? Next month?

Realistically, the world around you is unlikely to slow down. But you can take action to create the time you need. How might you do that?

[Box on page 3]

How often do you have time for things that are truly important to you?

Every day

On weekends

Hardly ever

During a typical day, do you

Do what you planned to do?

Follow an imposed routine that gets in the way of your plans?

Respond impulsively to whatever demands arise?

During a typical day, do you feel

In control?

Pressured to meet unreasonable demands?

Helplessly pushed from one activity to the next?

At the end of the day, have you

Accomplished the important things?

Finished the necessary work, perhaps poorly?

Had no time for what really matters?

How do you usually feel at the end of the day?

Satisfied and fulfilled

Empty, tired, and tense